Even AOL/HuffPo has noticed:
Do wonder if the Huffington Post will the link between Obama’s policies and the continued high unemployment and his rhetoric/actions and those perpetually persisting partisan fights.
Even AOL/HuffPo has noticed:
Do wonder if the Huffington Post will the link between Obama’s policies and the continued high unemployment and his rhetoric/actions and those perpetually persisting partisan fights.
“Perhaps”, wrote Michael Barone Tuesday in the Washington Examiner, President Obama’s inability to “stomach listening to views he does not share” . . .
is to be expected of one who has chosen all his adult life to live in university communities and who made his way upward in the one-party politics of Chicago. Thus on the “fiscal cliff” he left the unpleasant business of listening to others’ views and reaching agreement to Joe Biden.
A sad commentary on higher education in America today that university communities are seen not as places open to diverse points of view, but as akin to the one-party politics of Chicago. (Read the whole thing. It’s Barone.)
If the university today were to be the kind of place it should be, then instead of it producing a man like the incumbent president unwilling to negotiate, it would produce a man nearly identical to the one the Obama campaign (with the active assistance of the media) created in 2008, a post-partisan healer able to consider both sides of an issue, able (as well) to offer respectful rebuttals to opposing points of view.
Such a leader would work with his partisan adversaries to compromise and arrive at a consensus, much as Bill Clinton did in working with then-Speaker Newt Gingrich and the Republican Congresses of the mid-1990s.
Instead of working with Republicans, however, Obama, Barone observes,
To judge from his surly demeanor and defiant words at his press conference Monday, Barack Obama begins his second term with a strategy to defeat and humiliate Republicans rather than a strategy to govern.
Back in August, 2011. when reporting that the national debt has increased by $4 trillion under President Obama, CBS News’s Mark Knoller reported that:
Mr. Obama blames policies inherited from his predecessor’s administration for the soaring debt. He singles out:
- “two wars we didn’t pay for”
- “a prescription drug program for seniors…we didn’t pay for.”
- “tax cuts in 2001 and 2003 that were not paid for.”
Mr. Obama has now been reelected to a second term. The debt continues to increase.
At the outset of Mr. Obama’s term, shortly after passing the $800 billion stimulus, the Democratic 109th Congress passed a budget spending $400 billion more in FY2009 that Mr. Obama’s predecessor had requested in his last budget. Will any reporter ask Mr. Obama about these spending increases he — and his party — didn’t pay for?
Obama loves to blame his predecessor for the problems he “inherited,” even as most of his other predecessors merely acknowledged the problems they inherited and set about solving them.
Earlier today, Glenn Reynolds linked this chart illustrating “that things were actually improving until we got a Democratic Congress in 2007, and got worse when we elected Obama.” When will Obama start taking ownership for his record? Will when the media hold him to account for his failure to contain the growth of spending?
Yes, George W. Bush and the Republican 108th and 109th could have done more to contain federal spending. W and the divided 107th Congress did see an acceleration of federal spending, but next Republican Congress did get the message and started to rein in federal spending. As Jim Hoft reminded us last November:
In 2004 the federal budget deficit was 412 billion dollars. In 2005 it dropped to 318 billion dollars. In 2006 the deficit dipped to 248 billion dollars. And, in 2007 it fell below 200 billion to 162 billion dollars.
Under back-to-back Republican Congresses, we had three successive years of declining deficits. That represents, as Jim reports, a “sixty percent drop” whereas the Politico article that Glenn links reports that the national debt has grown by the same amount since Obama took office. And he’s only been in office for four years.
And he’s still pretending Republicans were responsible for the increase in debt when Democrat Congresses stopped the progress being made by the GOP. And it doesn’t seem our friends in the legacy media are “fact-checking” their deceptive claims.
Had I been a member of Congress, I would have voted against the fiscal cliff deal that passed the House earlier today. Given the current political environment, I could accept the higher taxes on the “wealthiest Americans”, had Democrats finally agreed to real spending cuts.
But, they haven’t; they’ve just kicked the can down the road. Democrats just aren’t willing to face the fiscal crisis facing our country, a fiscal crisis largely of their own creation. (Until the election of a Democratic Congress in 2006, deficits had been declining for three successive years–a fact of which many Americans, including a good number of Republicans, remain ignorant.)
I haven’t been following the debate as closely as I normally follow political issues because, well, I’m on vacation and would rather spend time with my family or read a book on Hawai’ian mythology than follow politics, especially given the media coverage of this issue.
President Barack Obama effectively took us to the cliff and many in the media are giving him a free pass. We are here because he and his Democrats ramped up spending in the first two years of his term when his party had large majorities in both houses of Congress and now are effectively asking Republicans to join them in paying for his spending spree.
And as they ramped up spending, Obama Democrats, to borrow an expression, gave us a vast expansion of the federal government they didn’t pay for.
Their fiscal irresponsibility notwithstanding, thanks in large part to the slanted coverage of the fiscal cliff negotiations — and to Speaker John Boehner’s reluctance to make the Republican case to the public — Democrats won this thing. And not just legislatively.
But, should Republicans play their cards right, it could well prove to be a Pyrrhic victory. In the 2012 election, Obama really only had one big issue which seemed to resonate with voters, that of raising taxes on the wealthiest Americans. He no longer has that issue and he hasn’t even begun his second term.
In a great piece on the left and the cliff, Yuval Levin concludes with the crucial questions, “Now they have gotten their tax increase, and what has it gained them but the prospect of an even slower economy? What’s their game plan?”
Exactly. What is their plan? (more…)
One of the many reasons those of us on the right are upset with Obama’s reelection is that we believe, along with one of the incumbent’s Democratic predecessors that the buck should stop with the man in the Oval Office. And the current Democratic chief executive seems to believe the buck stops with his ideological and partisan adversaries. Yesterday, Jim Geraghty, while questioning “just how committed Obama is to policies that undermine America’s economic health“, did acknowledge that the Democrat. . .
. . . doesn’t blink upon running up more than $5 trillion in debt in less than four years, $3.4 billion to $4 billion per day. We know he loves, loves,loves blaming Republicans for everything. We know he will blame Republicans for failure to pass immigration reform, bad jobs numbers, the deficit, the continuing housing crisis, gridlock in Washington, the debt panel’s failure to reach a deal, the difficulty of life for the unemployed, and the inability to build the Keystone Pipeline.
Now at some point, the public may get really tired of his “it’s never my fault” routine, and Obama might find himself in deep doo-doo. But so far, that hasn’t happened.
No, it just hasn’t happened. And the public doesn’t tire of it nor does the media hold him to account even though at the at the dawn of his administration, Obama told Democrats that he was “trying to break is a pattern in Washington where everybody is always looking for somebody else to blame.”
He didn’t break that pattern; he used it to define his defense.
NB: Tweaked the title.
Although Barack Obama saw his support among twentysomethings decline from 2008 to 2012, he still won a solid majority of those voters.
Their support seems based more on a blind faith in the incumbent than in an appreciation for his accomplishments. “The overall unemployment rate for 18-29 year olds for November 2012 is 10.9 percent“, with one out of every eight young Hispanics out of work and nearly one in five young African-Americans out of work.
The study linked above showed that the unemployment rate for twentysomwethings “would rise to 16.4 percent” if nearly two million young voters hadn’t dropped out of the workforce:
The declining labor force participation rate has created an additional 1.7 million young adults that are not counted as “unemployed” by the U.S. Department of Labor because they are not in the labor force, meaning that those young people have given up looking for work due to the lack of jobs.
That the Democrat’s support slipped among young voters suggests that at least some have woken up to the reality of Hope and Change™.
That image/headline even linked an article on FoxNews: EXCLUSIVE: FEMA teams told to ‘sightsee’ as Sandy victims suffered.
Here’s more news of FEMA’s incompetence, much of which is coming to light only after the election. Angry New Yorkers say Obama pledge to cut red tape ignored by FEMA.
FROM THE COMMENTS: David wonders at the ability of the media to craft a narrative about natural disasters:
It’s more than a little bit scary when you recognize the ability of the MSM to influence the perceptions of Americans as to the truth of what is going on. Before Katrina hit Navy and Coast Guard ships positioned off the coast, MREs and water were stockpiled in the Superdome, FEMA positioned medical teams and specialized personnel outside New Orleans, and aircraft were positioned to assess damage and carry out rescues. After the storm hit the responders carried out the largest post-war air rescue ever. A constant stream of helicopters ferried survivors out of flooded areas to safety. And yet the meme that Katrina was a failure of leadership saturated the news and talk shows for months. It was a politically motivated false narrative then just like the Sandy narrative now.
If Obama has been president in 2005, then we might certainly have learned of all the preparatory work that FEMA, the National Guard and the Coast Guard had done.
In a column which really must rank as one of the silliest on “fiscal cliff” negotiations, the Washington Post’s Dana Milbank calls on Mitt Romney to delay his retirement so he can help Republicans reach a compromise.
Milbank, like many liberal columnists based in the nation’s capital, seems to think that the problem is really controlling the “Republican backbenchers.” He fails to acknowledge that the president has failed to compromise himself, not having specified significant cuts to the federal budget he’d accept as part of a deal (you know that “balanced” approach which he talked about on the campaign trail).
If Republicans need to compromise on taxes, shouldn’t Democrats compromise on spending?
Milbank does at least recognize that fiscal cliff negotiations have reached an impasse. In calling on Romney to come in and help resolve things, he seem to have acknowledged that Obama has failed to forge a workable compromise.
Yesterday, ran into a Democratic friend whom I hadn’t seen since the debacle. I told him I feared that the election returns would mean continued economic stagnation, with the slow recovery sputtering out and the twentysomethings who voted overwhelmingly for Obama finding it increasingly difficult to find jobs.
He, citing “most economists”, insisted that the president alone can’t fix the economy.
And that comment got me thinking, wondering. . .
I mean, haven’t you noticed that many of the people insisting that the president alone can’t fix the economy are some of the very people who still blame the immediate past president (a Mr. George W. Bush) for the Great Recession?
Instead of taunting his partisan adversaries from a campaign-style trip to Pennsylvania, the Democrat should instead sit down with them and try to hash out their differences without attempting to score political points.
In the weekly Republican remarks, U.S. Sen Orrin Hatch of Utah reminded Americans that Obama did campaign on the type of plan his team proposed to Congress earlier this week:
The President has said he wants a so-called balanced approach to solve this crisis.
But what he proposed this week was a classic bait and switch on the American people—a tax increase double the size of what he campaigned on, billions of dollars in new stimulus spending and an unlimited, unchecked authority to borrow from the Chinese.
Maybe I missed it but I don’t recall him asking for any of that during the presidential campaign. These ideas are so radical that they have already been rejected on a bipartisan basis by Congress.
UPDATE: Commenting on Hatch’s remarks, Ed Morrissey disagrees with the Democrats’ defense of the president’s big-spending plan: ”The problem with negotiating under those circumstances is that it’s clear Obama isn’t negotiating in good faith. In fact, he’s not negotiating at all — he’s campaigning.“
The only way President Obama can win public relations battle over the fiscal cliff is with media cover
And CNN seems to be doing just that. Anchor Joe Johns began the “Situation Room” earlier today, almost reading from the Administration talking points, “Happening now: President Obama says he’s keeping a list of who’s naughty and who’s nice in the fight to keep middle-class taxes from going up and is asking the public for help in getting through to the ones he sees as naughty.”
So, they present Obama’s fight as one to “keep middle-class taxes from going up”.
“For his part,” Johns added. President Obama is trying to break that stalemate by asking voters to put more pressure on the Republicans.” He may be trying to put pressure on Republicans, but he’s not putting forward a serious proposal.
The network’s Chief White House Correspondent did acknowledge that the president’s proposal “was sort of a Democratic wish list”. But, after paying lip service to criticism of Democrats, she went on to trash Republicans, “And so Democrats have sort of put out the ideal Democratic version of a starting position and are asking Republicans to come up with a response. And instead of listening — response, Republicans are going — sort of balking at it.”
Of course, they’re balking. The proposal, by failing to rein in federal spending. doesn’t address the problem. Miss Yellin makes it seem like Republicans are the ones responsible for the statement.
The real culprit, however, is the president. Obama may contend that he’s pressing Congress to avoid the fiscal cliff, but he hasn’t signed onto any plan to address the nation’s burgeoning federal debt.
The issue is not Republican intransigence, but Obama’s failure to negotiate in good faith. It would be nice if our friends in the legacy media pointed out that the Democrat hasn’t put forward a proposal which meets his own criteria for a “balanced” approaching, cutting spending and raising taxes (on the wealthy).
To understand why many on the right are upset by the reelection earlier this month of Barack Obama as President of the United States, all you need do is look at his administration’s supposedly “balanced” approach to facing the fiscal cliff.
Simply put, it is not a serious proposal and shows (once again) that the Democrat is not serious about governing. At a time of fiscal crisis, with annual deficits topping $1 trillion for four successive years, instead of coming out with spending cuts, the Obama team is proposing spending increases.
And we could have told you what was coming. Despite his 2008 campaign talk of a “net spending cut” and his promise once in office to cut the deficit in half by the end of his first term, Barack Obama has shown no commitment to reducing federal spending — or to cutting the debt. As Doug Powers wrote yesterday, when learning of the White House’s latest proposal, “there’s one thing I take comfort in with this bunch, it’s their predictability“.
And we conservatives are left here, saying, “Well, we told you so.”
President Obama, as Fred Barnes reports in the Weekly Standards, has touted his “‘balanced’ approach to averting the fiscal cliff“, that is, a package which includes tax hikes as well as spending cuts.
Yet, the proposal Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner showed to House and Senate leaders failed to include any significant cuts, but did, in addition to higher taxes on “on wealthy Americans as well as higher taxes on capital gains and dividends“, it also included a “multiyear stimulus package with at least $50 billion for the 2013 fiscal year.” (The proposal even includes $600 billion in revenue “from unspecified revenue sources.”) Among the other proposal, there is a promise, at some future date, to try to find $400 billion in savings from Medicare and other social programs.
In short, it includes no specific spending cuts.
No wonder Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell “burst into laughter” when Geithner outlined the proposal. He said “nothing good” was “happening” in the negotiations because Obama was unwilling to “embrace serious spending cuts.”
As Charles Krauthammer put it, “there not only are no cuts in this, there’s an increase in spending with a new stimulus” (at 0:28 in the video at the link).
And they called Obama the grown-up in the room? He — and his team — are not behaving like grownups. They’re not putting forward a serious plan to address the nation’s debt problem.
Will the legacy even report how laughable this proposal is–at a time of record deficits and the president paying lip service to spending cuts, he offers a plan that increases federal spending?
He seems to be counting on something which carried him through the presidential campaign — media cover. Don’t count on it. (more…)
. . . who provided the talking points to Ambassador Susan Rice.
Just caught this on Breitbart:
Just a few minutes ago on CNN, Pentagon correspondent Barbara Starr reported that a high-placed source informed her that former CIA Chief David Petraeus will use his upcoming testimony to amend his previous testimony. According to this source, Petraeus will tell the closed door congressional hearing that he knew “almost immediately” that the September 11 anniversary attack on our Libyan consulate was a terrorist attack committed by the al-Qaeda-linked militia Ansar Al Sharia.
Read the whole thing. I have lots of thoughts on this, but am beat and regret I can’t express them as well as I’d like. This goes right to the administration’s credibility — and begs the question: why did they peddle the story that Ambassador Rice was instructed to peddle on the various Sunday shows?
POSSIBLY RELATED: SHOULD THE SECRETARY OF STATE BE A DUPE?
I’ve been traveling all day and haven’t have had as much time as I would like to check the blogs — or the news. I’m now in Cincinnati with my family and expect to have far less blogging time over the next few days.
I did buy a Wall Street Journal at LAX and have had time to skim the Yahoo! and Huffington Post (AOL) headlines as well as those on Instapundit and other favorite blogs. And as I read about the president insisting on a $1.6 trillion tax hike (on the rich — or so he says), I keep looking for other specific details about his plan to avoid the fiscal cliff.
Then, just before hitting the hay, I caught this on Jennifer Rubin’s blog
The press likes to paint House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) as a prisoner of his base. But in fact he was elected by unanimous vote and boldly put a grand bargaining offer on the table. That is far more than Senate Majority leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) has done, and much more than the president has done (at least in public). So where are the stories about the left-wing base blocking progress on a deal? I imagine left-leaning media editors and reporters would be flabbergasted by the notion.
Emphasis added. So, Boehner has put an offer on the table. And it doesn’t seem that either Senate Democrats or the president have followed suit.
Perhaps, Rubin is mistaken and the president has put a plan on the table. If you are aware that he has, please provide a link to a blog post/article which provides the details of that plan.
If he hasn’t, how then can he negotiate in good faith when one party has put its cards on the table — and he has not.
Fascination with General David Petraeus’s “personal story“, writes Paul Wolfowitz, “must not divert attention from the very significant policy failures that helped produce a chaotic security situation in Libya. Petraeus was not principally responsible for those mistakes, nor for similar mistakes that continue in Syria, nor for the misleading suggestion that killing Bin Laden had dealt a fatal blow to Al Qaeda.”
Far more familiar with the situation than yours truly, he offers seven questions, each offering a detailed understanding of the situation. His analysis is well worth your time.
Based upon my reading of various news reports — and blog commentary — let me list several questions of my own, questions which the administration has yet to answer:
UPDATE: Senator McCain has a few questions of his own.
In his press conference yesterday, President Obama seemed irritated when Jonathan Karl asked him about the Senator John McCain and Senator Lindsay Graham’s determination to block U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice’s potential nomination to be Secretary of State:
As I said before, she made an appearance at the request of the White House in which she gave her best understanding of the intelligence that had been provided to her. If Senator McCain and Senator Graham and others want to go after somebody, they should go after me. And I’m happy to have that discussion with them. But, for them to go after the U.N. Ambassador. . . .
Well, Mr. President, that U.N. Ambassador did go on a number of Sunday shows to put forward a theory at odds — even then — with what Libyan authorities were saying. They did not think that an obscure internet video had sparked the attacks.
Allahpundit (who links the video) asks the pertinent question:
What on earth was Rice doing on the Sunday shows in the first place? Two months later, I’ve yet to see an explanation of that in the media. She’s the ambassador to the UN; she has no firsthand knowledge of what happened in Benghazi the way, say, Hillary or Petraeus or John Brennan or Tom Donilon or other people who dealt with the crisis would have.
So, Mr. President, you want to have that discussions, let’s have that discussion, why did the administration dispatch Ambassador Rice to those talk shows and instructed her to say what she said? Was it that she was unfamiliar with the situation and so could repeat the administration talking points without doubting their veracity? And are you saying that a potential Secretary of State shouldn’t be held responsible for her words? (more…)
Just caught this on Instapundit:
DONALD SENSING: Petraeus and Broadwell: The FBI circles the wagons. “There is nothing here deserving of the media attention it is getting (which should be redirected now directly upon the FBI itself, not the principals) or deserving of the expenditure of investigator man hours and resources being expended on it. Does one smell the aroma of a US attorney general ordering the FBI to make sure that this non-issue stays the lead story as Congress prepares to hear testimony about the Benghazi attacks?”
Emphasis added. Given that our friends in the legacy media seem to prefer the tawdry details of sex scandal to the real story of the Obama administration’s incompetence, it is a reasonable question, no?
UPDATE: Also via Glenn, Monica Crowley asks the questions that our friends in the legacy media should be asking. And they ain’t about sex.